Eighty per cent of birdsong is non-functional

Installation show at the Plymouth Art Center where the work was about realizing a sensual world of form and colour, with ideas that set out to trick the senses. Where we expect 'natural' substances but are faced with synthetic nature. We are reminded of the scientist's desire to collect and analyse data, but the data collection here leads to no conclusions. Inanimate substances are piled up for non functional reasons-simply to aggregate.

Stuff is also pulled apart as it gathers, showing the inherent tendency for matter to analyse itself, but the data analyses also leads to no conclusions. Rather, it acknowledges the world. These alchemical operations- division(reductio) and collection(multiplicatio)- are just for the sake of it, challenging the scientific desire for answer, solution, explanation, closure,or proof.

This work finds its intellectual roots in a biology of qualities. Such an approach resists the dominant Darwinian orthodoxy that form can only be explored as function, where every phenomenon is explained as having an instrumental purpose linked to the survival of the species. Bird song in the same Darwinian argument , is seen as purely functional, denoting territory, attracting a mate, and so forth. Research shows, however that eighty per cent of bird song is non- functional. Birds sing just for the sake of it.